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Am J Clin Dermatol. 2016 Dec;17(6):701-707.

Deoxycholic Acid: A Review in Submental Fat Contouring.

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Springer, Private Bag 65901, Mairangi Bay, 0754, Auckland, New Zealand.


Deoxycholic acid is a secondary bile acid involved in dietary fat emulsification/solubilization that causes adipocyte lysis when injected into subcutaneous fat tissue. A 10 mg/mL injectable solution of synthetic deoxycholic acid (Kybella™; Belkyra™) is indicated in various countries, including the USA and several within Europe/the EU, to improve the appearance of moderate to severe convexity or fullness associated with submental fat (SMF) in adults, where it is currently the only approved treatment for fat below the chin. In several phase III trials conducted in this setting, injecting deoxycholic acid 2 mg/cm2 into the SMF reduced the convexity/fullness of moderate to severe SMF relative to placebo (with a single treatment comprising up to 50 injections, and up to six treatments given at least 1 month apart). These SMF benefits (which were measured subjectively by clinicians and recipients, as well as objectively, 12 weeks after the last treatment session) generally occurred without detriment to skin laxity and were largely maintained over extended follow-up (e.g. 2 years after treatment). Deoxycholic acid injections are generally well tolerated, with adverse events usually involving the treatment area, being mild to moderate in severity and resolving within approximately one treatment interval. However, not all patients with SMF may be suitable for deoxycholic acid therapy, making patient selection key to achieving desired aesthetic outcomes. Thus, deoxycholic acid injections are an effective and generally well tolerated, minimally invasive option for the treatment of moderate to severe SMF in select adults.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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